In The Conversation, Stephanie Norgate explores relationships between nature and the city, the past and present and character and writer. Shaped through both speech and storytelling, these visual, sensuous and imaginative poems celebrate friendship, even in grief, closeness in times of isolation and lockdown, and the longing to bridge gaps and find cures. Miracles are found in the everyday, in a child's sleep or a lit-up house. Textiles transform into remembrancers, landscape into emotion. A contemporary Daedalus views his life from a hang-glider. A scrap of handwriting, cafe talk, an exploding car, an earthquake, the naming of fields or a line of walkers ignite conversations about place, time and the tender paradoxes of mortality. Stephanie Norgate's first collection Hidden River (2008) was shortlisted for both the Forward Prize for Best First Collection and the Jerwood Aldeburgh First Collection Prize, and was followed by The Blue Den (2012). The Conversation is her third collection. Her poetry has been praised for the 'depth of its lyricism' (Jackie Wills, Warwick Review), and for being 'energetic and generous, and displaying a 'feeling for place, for the roots of things' and for being 'searching, memorable and disconcerting ... She has the ear for the music of a line and the shape and strength of an image.' (R.V. Bailey, Artemis).
About the Author
Stephanie Norgate is a poet and playwright. Her plays have been broadcast on BBC Radio 4. For many years, she ran the MA in Creative Writing at Chichester University and is now a Royal Literary Fund Fellow at the University of Southampton. She edited an international collection of essays, Poetry and Voice (CSP, 2012) and Winchester Poetry Festival's Chalk Poets Anthology (Sarsen Press, 2015). In 2016, she completed a study of poetry trails for South Downs National Park. As a translator, she has contributed to Modern Poetry in Translation and the MPT anthology, Centres of Cataclysm (Bloodaxe Books/MPT, 2016). Her chapter about the imagery of the house in her poetry appears in Architectural Space and the Imagination (Palgrave Macmillan, 2020). Her three collections of poetry with Bloodaxe are Hidden River (2008), which was shortlisted for both the Forward Prize for Best First Collection and the Jerwood Aldeburgh First Collection Prize, The Blue Den (2012) and The Conversation (due in 2021).